AC Milan take on Manchester United at Old Trafford this evening in the Europa League round of 16 first leg. Milan are missing a number of starters and will be looking for a way to bag an away goal to set up an interesting reverse fixture. Here are the key battles to look out for in the game:
Right back vs Left back
Aaron Wan-Bissaka vs Diogo Dalot
This will be a very interesting match up given that the two played together and are technically teammates at the same position. Dalot showed his attacking intent in the game against Verona and is more than capable to making some runs forward mimicking Hernandez style. Dalot already has a goal and two assists in the UEL and this is a big opportunity to show United what they are missing. Wan-Bissaka will be all over that wing and will be a very difficult player to handle.
Central defensive midfielder vs Central attacking midfielder
Franck Kessie vs Bruno Fernandes
The Penalty Kings going head to head. It’s pretty funny to have United vs Milan as a clash and to see if anyone gets awarded a penalty, I think Twitter would literally explode. But the bigger picture is for Kessie to keep United play in the midfield disjointed and to stop Fernandes from activating the pace available on the wings. Kessie will also need to be a vocal leader keeping the heads of the Rossoneri in the game.
Striker vs Goalkeeper
Edinson Cavani/Anthony Martial vs Gianluigi Donnarumma
With Rashford out, Cavani is expected to start but he may miss out due to injury as well. In that case, Martial would get the nod. Either way Donnarumma versus United’s main striker will be the biggest key battle of the game as we know he will be facing quite a number of shots from them. Cavani is obviously the worse option for us but Martial is a serious threat when he gets space to run into the box and curl past the keeper.